Hearing vs Listening

Ok, I’m at my wits end with my 7-year-old.  He’s got the best selective hearing I’ve ever seen.  He can recall minute and exhaustive details about the movie Up (which we saw in 3D this week … excellent!) and relay them to his dad over dinner, but if I tell him that “there’s one pillow on his desk and the other on his bed” he complains 30 seconds later that he only has one pillow. 

It drives me nuts.  I end up angry, and yes yelling sometimes, and he claims “but I didn’t HEAR you!”  He also tries the “But I can’t remember so many things at once!” line, which in this case didn’t work at all.  I do tend to give him 3 things to do at a time, and he really seems to be only able to concentrate on the first one.  I do think that’s some what a male thing, at least all the males in this family have that tendency!  It’s driving me insane. 

Speaking of sanity, I helped mine this week by sqeezing in the time to read a book, and the chosen one was Manic … the story of a woman’s life with manic depression.  Amazing, gut-wrenching, luminous, and I felt like I had a true glimpse into how it feels.  Highly recommended if you’ve got any connections to someone who has the disease.

Back to hearing vs listening … I KNOW my son hears, it’s his focus on what I’m saying that trails off halfway through as sentence.  As soon as he thinks he knows what I’m saying, he tunes out.  Any tricks to share?  I’d love to hear ‘em :).